Readers’ Forum: 10/15/19

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We should not pay our college athletes — they are getting help

California Gov. Gavin Newsom signed the Fair Pay to Play Act on Sept. 30. This
bill will override the amateurism that the NCAA has made a condition for college athletes to play. California is pushing for their college athletes to be paid by endorsements.

This act looks as though it will only help, but there are negative consequences that can’t be calculated. I love college athletes and what they do, but they do not need to be paid.
College athletes knew what they were doing when they tried out for the team. They knew they would be sacrificing time and energy to pursue something they love.

College games are  more fun to watch because the players are playing for their team. If money was introduced to the locker room, we would lose a vital distinction between the pro teams and college teams.

On the other hand, I have just started college and could not imagine adding the strict schedule of a college level sport to my load. There would have to be something helping me live day to day. That is where scholarships, food grants and housing come into play. They may not be paid with money, but there is always help. Also, there have already been theories and rumors of the NCAA not allowing California teams to compete for championships. That would take out major programs such as the University of Southern California, University of California Berkley and many more.

—Jackson Armstrong
Charleston, South Carolina

“Mourning with those who mourn”: Re-writing the LDS non-conventional grief conversation

Across all population groups, suicide has been responsible for 1.4% of global deaths and
remains the 10th leading cause of death in the United States. It’s an epidemic that spares no ethnicity, socioeconomic class, gender or age, leaving few fortunate enough to remain
unaffected by this public health crisis. Confronting the reality of suicide grief and death by
suicide is the first step in being able to help process the experiences of survivors around us.

In the wake of my father’s suicide two years ago, it became commonplace for members
of my Latter-day Saint ward to comfort my grief with behavior patterns typical for those reacting to conventional death. Our trained responses usually involve giving permission to let go and move on; however, these traditions have shown to aggravate victim trauma and dismiss the validity of their emotions.

At the local church level, saints can start by being available — offering a listening ear, showing patience and casting out judgement. We have the opportunity to minister to those suffering, create unity within our wards and offer companionship to the bereaved. Learning how to handle the tragedies of others makes us better representatives of the Savior. Surviving the loss of a loved one and being willing to help empower those suffering is how we can let go of our fear of vulnerability, offer Christ-like loving service and “comfort those who stand in need of comfort.”

—Kirsten Henderson
Dallas, Texas

Giving to the homeless

Since we were children, we have seen homeless people and beggars in the streets. Living two years in French Polynesia, I had the privilege of getting to know all kinds of different people, wealthy and poor. I learned to empathize, try to understand others and focus on how I can help rather than the negatives.

Should we give to the homeless and beggars? I’ve always said yes! Others would say no because, “They put themselves in that situation,” or, “They don’t work hard enough.” I’ve learned that we as people all have different personalities, strengths and weaknesses. That is a really good thing. It shows how much we need one another. Having another person to support you can help a lot, and many of the homeless and beggars I have talked to say they feel alone and forgotten.

Other people say, “I am not going to give them money so they can buy their drugs or alcohol.” Others would give food or clothing to them, which is a good thing as well, but it is better to give them what they ask for and not what we think they need. If we are in the position to actually give, meaning we have the funds to do so, I believe we should. Even if we can’t give money at the time because we are struggling financially, we could do something as simple as talk to them.

No one is perfect, but we are all trying to succeed in our own different ways. So yes, if someone asks for help or for money, let us reconsider our thoughts and actions in any positive and uplifting way we can.

—Hunter Tiatia
West Valley City, Utah

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